"My symptoms drove me crazy for two years before I was diagnosed with perimenopause"

Published: 2nd March 2020

Claire Dunwell, a patient of Dr Louise Newson, wrote this heartfelt article for The Sun, explaining how she struggled with perimenopausal symptoms for years before being diagnosed. 

After turning 40, Claire started suffering from a variety of symptoms such as migraines, anxiety and heart palpitations - all of which were unusual for her as she had always been positive, healthy and happy. After several trips to her GP, Claire was no better off and had been prescribed painkillers, antidepressants and beta blockers. She had no idea that her symptoms could be a result of her changing hormone levels.

At 42, after finally being diagnosed as perimenopausal, Claire searched for a solution and found Dr Louise Newson and the Newson Health clinic in Stratford-upon-Avon. Dr Newson explained to Claire that women can experience symptoms for up to 10 years before their periods stop and for some, the perimenopause can be just as draining as the real thing. Claire was prescribed an oestrogen gel and progesterone tablets and said "To say that it has changed my life is an understatement. The migraines are gone, the anxiety has stopped, and I feel like myself for the first time in two years."

Speaking of the perimenopause, Dr Newson says "Most women get some symptoms linked to changing hormone levels during perimenopause. Some have symptoms for a decade before the menopause. Guidance from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) says that if a woman is over 45, we don’t need to test for perimenopause or menopause. If they’re 40 to 45 tests can be useful, and if they’re under 40 it’s important to get a diagnosis. In these situations a woman experiencing menopausal symptoms should seek help and advice from a doctor who specialises in the menopause."

Click here to read Claire's story and the full article from The Sun.


Newson Health Menopause and Wellbeing Centre was founded by leading menopause specialist and GP, Dr Louise Newson, and officially opened in September 2018 by Liz Earle MBE. Created to help women receive the most appropriate, individualised treatment for their perimenopause and menopause, it has quickly become a centre of excellence, providing care to women of all ages, as well as running educational events for primary care clinicians.

Dr Newson is also the founder of the Menopause Doctor website, a free resource since 2017, providing the latest unbiased, evidence based information about the menopause and perimenopause for women as well as the most recent national and international menopause articles and guidelines for healthcare professionals. The website has been adopted by the Royal College of GPs (RCGP) as an official educational library aimed at patients and healthcare professionals wishing to learn more about the menopause.

Newson Health Research and Education is a not-for-profit organisation founded by Dr Newson, from which all profits gained from the organisation's activities, such as event sponsorship, delegate fees and speaker's fees, are invested back into the business.